I thought about doing the same and losing the front fender but then of course one needs to fab a mount for the brake line. I'm not too concerned about the stock setup in terms of fork lowers protection, seems good enough but your setup should only help. I just see one option to save weight, but maybe the front fender doesn't weigh much anyways?
A good idea. All it takes is a rock thrown up by a car to create a divot on the exposed male slider which in turn will eat up your fork seal and make it leak. I've seen this happen many times on street bikes.
Be careful with the covers, they are a good idea in theory but can end up trapping small sharp rocks and sand and gouge the shaft pretty badly. I'm leaving mine alone since the fender protects against a direct rock to the front of the stanchion already.
Normally those are to cover the seals. I'd be worried about them trapping dirt against your seals this way. Plus when your forks compress theyvsre just going to bow out, letting debris behind them. Great idea, just prolly won't work like you want.